The profoundly intertwined threads of the online world have opened up many opportunities for people worldwide to start a fundraiser. A social entrepreneur living in India could raise funds to provide employment opportunities to marginalised women in Ghana or a teenager can start a campaign to raise funds for a local animal shelter in Mumbai. Irrespective of the cause they believe in, they can create a fundraising campaign from anywhere in the world.
One of the most effective ways to raise money for any social cause is through crowdfunding. Before we look at how to start a crowdfunding campaign, let’s see what this popular medium of fundraising means. Crowdfunding is a means of raising funds from many people. Any number of people can
Donate whatever amount they wish to help reach the campaign’s financial goal. For example, a non-profit working on providing free cancer treatment to financially disadvantaged individuals can start a crowdfunding campaign. They will put their campaign online, spread the word, and get donations.Now that you know what crowdfunding means let us illustrate how to create a fundraiser online.
Identifying the financial goal
Let’s take the example of a non-profit that works on the mental health of adolescents. They provide free counselling services to at-risk teenagers from vulnerable populations in the city. Being a non-profit, they need to raise funds to pay the salaries to their team of counsellors. Understanding the increasing importance given to mental health by the general public, the organisation may realise that crowdfunding is one of the best avenues of funding to explore. They will now decide the amount they want to raise. Besides this, they will attach relevant documents to showcase how the funds will be used. This will add credibility and transparency to the campaign, and the potential donors will be able to see how their donations can make a difference.
Choose the right crowdfunding platform
Many crowdfunding platforms, such as Ketto, have a reputation for successfully hosting hundreds of campaigns. All of them have different USPs and strengths. Do your due diligence and check out which platform best suits your needs. Understand their pricing structure and services offered. You can also check out existing campaigns on its website to assess the kind of success the platform can enable.
Write your story
Let your beneficiaries’ stories make a case for your cause. Instead of talking about generic statistics about poverty, the prevalence of mental health illnesses in the country, or cases of child labour reported, write about how these big numbers affect real people. Include pictures of your past work and beneficiaries, with their consent. Taking the previous example, the mental health organisation will include photos of their past workshops conducted with the adolescents. This lends credibility to your cause and shows the real impact of your work.
Form a strategy
Simply sharing your crowdfunding campaign page on your social media isn’t enough. You will need to devise a strategy to reach as many people as possible. Identify how much money you can dedicate to fundraising and then use it. It may sound counterproductive, but you need to have a budget for fundraising. This money can be used for paid promotion of your campaign.
Appreciate your supporters
No crowdfunding campaign is complete without including a component of gratitude in it. Have a plan to express your appreciation for your existing donors and those who will donate through the crowdfunding platform? Will it be through emails or a shout out on social media? Will you send them a card made by your beneficiaries or send them special invites to the next program you will be hosting? Appreciating your supporters can go a long way in creating long-term relationships with them. It would help if you also kept your donors in the loop by sharing updates on your campaign. Once you have these five steps considered and taken care of, running a successful crowdfunding campaign will become much easier. Lastly, Fundraising is not a one-person job but a team effort. So, don’t hesitate to seek help.
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